I shall do my best

Saturday August 12, 2006

The main reason I still count birthdays is to be sure I don’t lose track of my calendar age. The date, the day of the week, the name of the prime minister, and my own date of birth are positioning facts, and my clear knowledge of them is a measure by which I can gauge the state of my slow descent into senility and dissolution. The birthday presents and cards are nice, too.

Today I marked my sixty-seventh birthday. Not in any flag-waving or balloon-inflating manner, just a quiet celebration, the way we do things around here. Graham had to work, of course, but at least this was a year when we were together rather than separated by half the Kingdom. To be honest, that was the most welcome gift so far as I am concerned.

I don’t count sixty-seven as any great age, though as an avid reader of history, I do acknowledge that it would have been so in classical Roman times. There are many areas of our own sad planet where it would be an astonishing age even today.

Here in Britain, in the twenty-first century, it’s an honourable age but not at all remarkable. We are all of us urged to live much longer than that. I’m enjoying life, and I shall do my best to oblige.



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